U.S. gave ‘heads up’ to France about pre-election hacking by Russia
Posted: 11:51 am Tuesday, May 9th, 2017
By Staff Writer
The head of the National Security Agency told Congress on Tuesday that U.S. intelligence analysts saw signs of Russian involvement in a pre-election hacking attack in France, and moved to let their French counterparts know of the effort by Moscow in the days running up to the recent runoff elections for French President.
“We had become aware of Russian activity, we had talked to our French counterparts prior to the public announcements,” of the hacks, as Admiral Mike Rogers told a Senate hearing that the U.S. had given France a “heads up” on what Russia was doing.
“Look, we’re watching the Russians, we’re seeing them penetrate some of your infrastructure; here’s what we’ve seen, what can we do to assist,” was how the NSA chief described what went on, as emails from the front runner in the French race for President, Emmanuel Macron, were released online.
“We had high confidence in the judgment that the Russians were clearly trying to undermine our democracy and discredit us broadly,” Rogers said, restating part of the election judgment of the U.S. Intelligence Community.
“It’s become crystal clear that Russia has really mastered this domain of digital disinformation,” said Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM).
“They clearly had a preference that candidate Clinton not win,” Adm. Rogers said of the Russians their 2016 interference.
“And they also wanted to insure that if she did win, that she was weakened,” Rogers said.